One doesn’t have to walk far in this city to see a building clad in azulejo, or painted in a bright colour. The Fábrica de Cerámica da Viúva Lamego was originally a pottery workshop founded by António da Costa Lamego in 1849, producing tiles and ceramics. When he died the factory adopted the name Viúva Lamego, the Viúva Lamego factory is now in Sintra and still produces hand painted tiles, the original building is now a tourist attraction.
Along the same street is the 1908 Hotel, named after the year it was built, a newly refurbished Art Nouveau building, with a sprinkling of azulejo.
It seems as though it has rained in Lisbon for weeks, torrential rain is not ideal to go exploring with my camera, however I made the most of a break in the weather for a quick visit to the district of Príncipe Real. The area gets its name, Príncipe Real, (royal prince) from the first son of Queen Mary II. My first stop was to see Sao Bento Palace.
Sao Bento Palace dates back to the late 16th century, when a monastery, said to be the first Benedictine monastery in Lisbon, was situated on this site. The building was damaged in the 1755 earthquake, and what was left became the seat of the Portuguese Parliament in 1834, eventually being renovated into this enormous Neoclassical palace, Palacio das Cortes or Parlamento. I couldn’t get any further back to get the whole building in one photo.
Príncipe Real has 19th century mansions, trendy restaurants and bars, antique shops, green spaces and a ten acre botanical garden, which was closed for refurbishment when I was here. It also provides great views of the city, once the weather is better I will take my camera so I can show more of this district.
One can just see the Ponte 25 de Abril suspension bridge in this photo, it is one of Lisbon’s most notable landmarks and spans the River Tagus at the narrowest point. The bridge connects Lisbon, on the north bank, with the district of Alameda on the south bank.
Opposite the Portuguese Parliament is this vivid yellow building, brightening up, what was, weather wise, a rather gloomy day. This striking piece of street art is on the side of a house.
This is another view of the Ponte 25 de Abril suspension bridge taken near the Praça do Comércio.
Praça do Comércio is known by the locals as Terreiro do Paço, because it was where the royal palace was before it was destroyed by the earthquake in 1755. It is one of the largest squares in Europe and was completely rebuilt after the earthquake. The chap on the horse in the middle of the square is King José I who was the Portuguese ruler during the reconstruction of Lisbon and the statue was inaugurated on his birthday on the 6th June 1775.